Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding - Chengdu, China
To end an amazing two weeks in Chengdu, we visited the Panda base, to check out those cute guys in suits
It was the day we had all been waiting for, a visit to the Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding. Over the past couple of years I have been against zoos, and after visiting one last year on my travels, I vowed to never support visiting one again. However, I thought with it being a research base, my expectations of how the animals would be kept would be different. But seeing the pandas pacing up and down their enclosure, bored away from their natural habitat really upset me and a couple of others in our group. [Edit: Woo, Pandas are no longer endangered thanks to the research base].
On the plus side, the pandas looked healthy, had plenty of bamboos to sit and chew and the enclosures were clean. We got to see newborn baby pandas, which were incredibly cute and tiny, annoyingly my photos turned out blurry as we were all being pushed and elbowed down the line by impatient people, so I haven't added them to this post.
This was my last full day in China, I was really sad to leave as I had an amazing experience and met some wonderful people along the way, the Chinese volunteers and British students were lovely and I am so happy to have met them and shared this experience with them. I would love to go back to China one day and see more of the fascinating country and culture.
My flight to get to China had two transfers and I was travelling for 24 hours, but on the way back I only had 1 transfer in Amsterdam and 12 hours of travelling before I was back home in Birmingham, which was a relief. I flew with KLM and everything ran smoothly, the service, food and choice of films and tv programmes during the flight were good too, which made the long haul flight go quickly. It was so lovely getting back home and seeing my dog, he knocked me down onto the kitchen floor and I was stuck there for an hour with him licking my face and wanting his belly scratched.